Rod Gillis, a prominent Saint John lawyer, was released on Friday after only one day in jail. He was sentenced on Thursday to 22 months in jail for obstruction of justice. (CBC)

Prominent Saint John lawyer Rod Gillis is back on the street a day after being sentenced to 22 months in jail for obstruction of justice.

Gillis was sentenced in Bathurst on Thursday to 22 months after attempting to tamper with witnesses in a case against his client, former Liberal MLA Frank Branch. Branch was facing a civil lawsuit against the North Shore Forest Products Marketing Board and on criminal charges of fraud and extortion.

Gillis has also been suspended from practising law by the Law Society of New Brunswick, pending a disciplinary hearing.

Gillis was released at 2 p.m. on Friday following a hearing in Fredericton. He is appealing his conviction.

A date has not yet been set for Gillis's appeal, however. If Gillis's appeal fails, he will have to serve at least two-thirds of his sentence, almost 15 months, before being eligible for parole.